X100S indor night shots with build in flash
I decided to write this, let's say review, because of two main critics I heard about X100S, and advanced compact cameras as a whole. These are:
- compact cameras are pointless because of the existence of advanced mobile phones with cameras
- x100s jpeg engine makes skin look artificial
So I went with my x100s to a birthday party of a friend of mine and this are my conclusions:
Before Fuji I had a DSLR Nikon D5100 with external flash SB-700, which was not a bad combination at all, but for me it suffered from one main point - it was large combination. I remember the last time I took it to another party. I took it out from my case and I still remember the looks of the people. They were almost scared Who is this guy with this PIECE OF EQUIPMENT and what kind of bad things he will do to us. Let's not talk about the dark wooden ceiling which completely ruined the advantage of the SB-700 with its movable head. So I decided to acquire something more compact.
My settings for night shootings:
- M mode,
- aperture not further than f4, so the flash will not strugle
- shouter speed around 1/60s to control the ambient ligh
- embedded flash to do all the rest.
- tried both auto focus and manual focus.
- jpeg with NPS film simulation mode
Let's move to the point. Here are the bad things regarding the night usage of x100s.
- as a lot of reviews pointed - the autofocus is slow in low light
- if you release and quickly press the button again in many cases it just does not respond and will not focus. You will need to suppress the urge to press it quick again
- red eyes everywhere. But I suppose this is an inevitable point when using build in flash which is close to the lens. Fortunately, this is easy fixable even in jpegs.
- no quick setting for flash compensation.
Now I want to address the first critic about the mobile phone cameras. I will do this by showing only two images and I will let to you guess which is made with fuji (consider the fact that I am still learning how to use this camera and I made few mistakes, which I will point somewhere below, so the pictures could be even better)
Regarding the second critic about the artificial skin. I would say the opposite - I am in love with this so called artificial skin considering the fact that this is done with direct flashlight. I have an oily skin and most of the time I hate all pictures with me where I look like sweaty drunk. I don't know how fuji engine process this but I like it:
Also look at the colours above. I can honestly say that there is not even one picture from that evening with mistaken White Balance, which happened a lot with my old DSLR. I had a lot of yellow pictures in the past.
So what about the colours? In my opinion they are perfect:
Now about the mistakes I made. I was shooting in M mode but with auto ISO. Considering the fact that I wanted a lot of times to freeze the motion with the flash, I was setting shutter speed to high values to minimize the ambient light and prevent ghost blur, but the camera was too smart to increase the ISO so the ambient light became important So if you want to consider the flash to freeze the motion it is may be a good idea to put ISO to manual settings. On the other hand this mistake may be added to the battery life, because lower ISO will require more flash power, so everything seems to have bad and good sides.
Another mistake wan not to set the AF-L button in autofocus mode, so I missed few shots because of the slow focus seeking, but since I was at the same distance, may be I could have escaped this with locked focus.
Another mistake was, to shoot in wide open f/2. I think f/4 would give more freedom when shooting at such kind of events.
In conclusion I can say that I love my Fuji X100S, especially the skin tones and the colours. It is not the best camera to shoot night shots but it works regarding of all the critics.